Syria: destruction, suffering, death. Nowadays if you were to ask German people what they associate with this war-torn country, they may very well come up with these words.
The Syrian photographer Mohamad al-Roumi, whose pictures of his native country constitute an extraordinary life's work, is now showing a different side to Syria in his exhibition “Contrast Syria" at the Museum für Islamische Kunst. Here visitors can see pictures taken in Syria's north-eastern provinces during the 1990s, showing the region's nomadic population and the working conditions to be found in its poverty-stricken towns. Many of the people currently arriving in Germany call these parts of Syria their home.
Mohamad al-Roumi invites visitors to share his highly personal view of his homeland, mediated through a sophisticated and authentic visual language. There is nothing left to chance; rather, each picture seems to convey some actual essence of reality. Al-Roumi seeks to craft a special expressive idiom, directing our gaze both to the beauty and ugliness of everyday life. Contemplation is accorded a particularly significant role in the photographs, which were evidently not created spontaneously. A profound sense of reverence characterizes his portraits of people who, despite often being engaged in exhausting work, still radiate tremendous dignity.
It is precisely this highly personal perspective that allows Mohamad al-Roumi to show what Syria really is: a home to people from a variety of different ethnic and religious backgrounds. By offering a Syrian's perspective on his own homeland, the photographs lend a view of the country distinct from the image that we have recently become accustomed to seeing. This helps provide a better understanding of Syria's significance for its inhabitants and a clearer sense of their actual everyday reality.
The exhibition is organized in cooperation with the Syrian Heritage Archive Project and supported by the German Foreign Office.
U-Bahn U6 (Friedrichstraße)
S-Bahn S1, S2, S25, S26 (Friedrichstraße); S3, S5, S7, S9 (Hackescher Markt)
Tram M1, 12 (Am Kupfergraben); M4, M5, M6 (Hackescher Markt)
Bus TXL (Staatsoper); 100, 200 (Lustgarten); 147 (Friedrichstraße)
Low-carbon public transport connections
Sun 10:00 - 18:00
Mon 10:00 - 18:00
Tue 10:00 - 18:00
Wed 10:00 - 18:00
Thu 10:00 - 20:00
Fri 10:00 - 18:00
Sat 10:00 - 18:00
Opening times on public holidays Plan your visit
During the current stage of renovations, the hall containing the Pergamon Altar is due to remain closed to the public until 2023. The north wing and the gallery of Hellenistic art are also affected by the closure. The South Wing of the Pergamonmuseum, featuring the Market Gate of Miletus, the Ishtar Gate and Processional Way from Babylon, and the Museum of Islamic Art, remains unaffected and is open to the public during this time.
At the moment the finds from Uruk and Habuba Kabira as well as the rooms with babylonian and ancient iranian monuments are not accessible to the public.
Please note that the elevator is out of order until further notice and that due to construction and the high volume of visitors, longer waiting times may be experienced.
Last admission and ticket sales 30 minutes before closing time.
12,00 EUR Concessions 6,00
Museum Island all exhibitions
18,00 EUR Concessions 9,00
Annual ticket Basic
permanent exhibitions, certain times
Museum Pass Berlin 3 days for permanent exhibitions
29,00 EUR Concessions 14,50
Annual ticket Classic
temporary exhibitions not included
50,00 EUR Concessions 25,00
Annual ticket Classic Plus
100,00 EUR Concessions 50,00
Annual membership Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
from just 25,00 EUR